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InfiniBand Goes Mainstream

12:10 PM -- With QLogic's purchase of SilverStorm, even InfiniBand's former naysayers (present company included) must acknowledge that the high-speed interconnect's days as a niche play may be coming to an end. (See QLogic Grabs SilverStorm.)

The $60 million acquisition, predicted in August by Byte and Switch, brings InfiniBand solidly under the wing of a major vendor, one that is serious about developing all flavors of storage technology. (See QLogic Eyes SilverStorm.)

"Our industry contacts suggest InfiniBand is gaining traction in certain vertical markets. We believe QLGC's marketing prowess and strong OEM relationships could help accelerate InfiniBand adoption," writes Daniel Renouard of Robert W. Baird & Co. in a note today.

That's a modest prediction. QLogic's backing could work wonders for InfiniBand gear. And there's no doubt the vendor is serious about its mission. Recall that QLogic already forked over $109 million in February for Pathscale, which makes InfiniBand chips that compete with those of Mellanox. (See QLogic Bets on InfiniBand.) Now QLogic also has a solid bid for advancement in InfiniBand devices, where it competes against Cisco and Voltaire. With investment of nearly $170 million this year alone, can anyone doubt QLogic's ambition?

Certainly, its key OEMs, HP and IBM, aren't likely to do so.

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